When it comes to choosing an IT technology partner, more information is never a bad thing. Rather than obscure or mislead, a technology partner should prepare you for a long-term relationship dedicated to providing the best support possible. At Dataprise, we have summarized what we believe to be the top five topics to discuss when choosing an IT partner. Summarized as ‘PULSE’, these topics represent the first steps to check the heartbeat of your potential partner.
With many options for help desk providers, you want to ensure you select a provider that has successful and proven processes in place. Selecting a help desk that leverages Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) or Help Desk Institute (HDI) models means that the processes utilized are customizable, repeatable, and efficient which allows them to maintain full ownership of each issue to better enable service delivery. Your provider should have SLA options for program management, trend reporting, and root-cause analysis so they can provide continually improved service to your business.
2. User Experience
As you evaluate a help desk provider, it’s important to know who answers your calls. You should ensure that you’re working with a strong customer service focused team that can supply the support and assistance you need while providing first-rate customer care. Help desk representatives should be trained and knowledgeable in a wide array of different technologies and IT concepts. The ideal staff is also certified and has the real-world experience to better help and support your business. Additionally, providers that offer a self-help option to customers allow for end-users to receive the assistance they need while saving your business money and time.
Nowadays, many companies outsource their help desk solutions overseas. However, by providing options for both overseas and domestic help desk, you have the ability to choose the solution the best fits your business need. Benefits of an overseas help desk range from reduced costs, to additional availability, and efficiency. While a domestic help could provide specialized service, support for sensitive accounts, and a quicker resolution to complex IT issues.
4. Service Offerings
Your help desk provider should offer a wide range of options to create a customizable experience for your business. It’s important that they work with you to create a custom SLA that fits the needs of your company, and promotes continuous process improvement and business growth while continuing to be cost-efficient and beneficial. The provider you choose should offer a variety of service options to support your business needs, such as private labeling.
In the world of IT, unexpected malfunctions always occur at the worst possible time, it's virtually a tenet of the occupation. With this foreknowledge, it’s important to ensure that someone is available to assist quickly and efficiently. Every minute spent waiting for a technical issue to be resolved costs your business time and money. If your managed service provider doesn’t staff a night or weekend shift and you’re locked out of your account on a Friday evening, you may have to wait for your issue to be looked at until the next week. However, a service level agreement (SLA) with a 24x7 help desk means you receive timely support, and on mutually agreed-upon terms. At Dataprise, SLAs form the core of our service plans. Though we offer several out-of-the-box SLAs, we also have the ability to create custom versions to best fit your organizational needs.
Private labeling is a time-saving and profitable option if your business provides technical support for custom applications or monitoring of proprietary software and infrastructure. With private labeling, a help desk can seamlessly integrate with your brand and identify as part of your organization while echoing your company’s messaging in service delivery and customer care. This allows you to create higher-level SLAs with your customers to provide the support they need, allowing you to focus on running your business.
While these IT help desk selection criteria examples are a starting point for your search, the most important thing to consider when deciding on a help desk provider is that they provide value to your business and allow for improved operational efficiency.
Do you need more IT help desk selection criteria examples? If you're interested in learning more about how to decide on a help desk, Dataprise can help. Check out our free, downloadable 4 Cs Checklist, that provides additional points and information to help you identify an IT partner.